Spread Obama’s Wealth?

Posted in 2008 Election on October 30th, 2008

*SMIRK*


Cartoon by Rick McKee of the Augusta Chronicle

I just want you to be clear, Sen. Obama its not that I want to punish your success I just want to make sure that everybody who is behind you that theyve got a chance at success too.

Misdefining Racism

Posted in Ethics & Morality, Politics, Society on September 18th, 2008

Language shapes or gives shape to human thought. Therefore changes to culture’s language either represent a change in the what or how the culture thinks or are an attempt to induce changes in how the culture thinks.

This becomes quite clear when one looks at how people – mostly in America and other parts of Western Culture – have changed the definition of the “racism” in order to further their own agenda. In the past racism was defined in a denotative manner that contained no dependencies on secondary functions, constructs, or systems.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary definition:

Racism
Function: noun
Date: 1933

Definition(s):

  1. a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race
  2. racial prejudice or discrimination

This was and is the proper definition of racism. It accurately denotes and defines the phenomenon of racism.

Sadly, various Sociologists decided to craft a new definition of racism, one more suited to the agenda of societal change. Their new (mis)definition is:

Racism
Function: noun
Date: 1970

Definition(s):

  1. Prejudice plus power

This (mis)definition of racism has its roots in the writings of Dr. Delmo Della Dora, who first devised this corruption of the meaning and nature of racism. It is a purely agenda-driven definition of racism. It’s purpose is to make racism a purely White problem and to free minorities from any and all responsibility for their own bigotry. In other words, this is a claim that no member of a minority group can be racist due the prevailing demographic disparities prevent them from having significant power.

This serves no purpose except as an attempt to lock Whites and minorities into fixed roles of oppressor and victim, with the latter either trying extracting concessions from the former or in rebellion against the former.

Only White people can be racist. This the battle cry of a generation of anti-racist activists, theorists, and minority leaders who have twisted the English language to further their agenda. It is a slogan that hopefully will go down in history as one of the most poorly conceived counterproductive arguments ever made by man.

ICC Oversteps Authority

Posted in Politics on July 13th, 2008

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has once again attempted to overstep its authority by involving itself in matters which are outside of its jurisdiction. On Monday 14 July, ICC Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo will submit to the Judges of Pre-Trial Chamber I his evidence on crimes committed in the whole of Darfur over the last five years. Specifically he is requesting an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir on the charges of genocide and crimes against humanity for the systematic killings in Sudan’s western Darfur region since 2003.

At first read this seems to be a fine idea. It isn’t.

The The International Criminal Court derives its powers from the Rome Statute signed into treaty on 17 July 1998 and entered into force on July 1, 2002. The Rome Statute is an international treaty which specifically grants the ICC jurisdiction in only in those States which formally expressed their consent to be bound by its provisions. These States voluntarily became Parties to the Statute. The 106 Nations who are currently States Parties to the Rome Statute do not include Sudan! The ICC has absolutely no jurisdiction over the Sudanese or their President Omar Hassan al-Bashir.

As bad as the situation is in Sudan, especially the Darfur region, I believe it is an even worse situation in the long run for an international body such as the ICC to be gratuitously overstepping its authority and ignoring the dictates and limitations of the treaty that created it and empowered its actions.

I’m fairly sure that the apologetics used to rationalize the ICC’s frankly extra-legal endeavors are that what is happening in the Darfur region of Sudan is an ongoing parade of atrocities, many – possibly most – of them committed systematically at the bequest of al-Bashir’s government. That’s fine and emotionally satisfying, but if one condones such actions by the ICC, then one must also condone the actions of Israel, the US, China, Russia, and any other nation that steps outside of international law and treaties to “do what it deems is necessary” to end an atrocity or protect itself.

For what little it’s worth the Sudanese government has exhibited a fierce defiance of the ICC. They even threatened to try Moreno-Ocampo in a Sudanese court for “terrorism” after the ICC Prosecutor tried to apprehend and arrest Sudanese State Minister Ahmed Haroun, one of the Sudanese citizens facing a previous ICC warrant, as he was about to go on a trip to Saudi Arabia.

NOTE: I really hate feeling the need to make posts such as this one. On a personal level I’d happily sell my life to visit the same horrors upon the Sudanese government and their forces that they’ve visited on the people of Darfur. One has to look beyond that though and see the ramifications the actions taken to redress these issues.

Thank you ever so much, Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo, for forcing me to side with al-Bashir and his ilk on anything! May the Gods create a special Hell for you rot within for eternity.

Obama’s Service Plan

Posted in 2008 Election on July 9th, 2008

On Wednesday, July 2, 2008, the Democratic Presumptive Presidential Nominee Sen. Barack Obama, in his speech at the University of Colorado on national service, promised that, if elected as president of the United States of America he would “set a goal for all American middle and high school students to perform 50 hours of service a year, and for all college students to perform 100 hours of service a year.”

Sen. Obama has promised that he would ensure that these federally mandated goals are met by, among other things, attaching strings to federal education dollars. States whose school systems and universities didn’t meet federal quotas for student performed public service hours would be denied federal educational dollars.

While this plan does not – despite some conservative pundit’s rants – violate the 13th Amendment which outlawed slavery and most other forms of forced servitude, it is still a vile and pernicious assault on both States’ rights and individual liberty.

One must remember that a similar (mis)use of federal education dollars to enforce a federally mandated curriculum, the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), has been reviled and complained about for years now. Yet it at least centered on curriculum and results-oriented accountability, whereas Obama’s proposed use of federal education dollars is for the purpose of mandating public service efforts by students.

Perhaps Sen. Obama should spend less time analyzing how he could, if elected as president, circumvent the 10th Amendment – which strictly limits the powers of the Federal Government – and spend more time reviewing the relevant Child Labor laws such as the the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

NOTE: This post only deals with that part of Obama’s National Service plan that deals with using federal education dollars to coerce the States into requiring public service work-hour quotas from students. There are other points in his plan that I endorse in principle, though as in all things involving the federal bureaucracy, I am skeptical of the implementation.

Foole Meze

Posted in Recipes on May 28th, 2008

I especially like this dish served with good feta cheese and a loaf of crusty bread to sop up the seasoned olive oil.

Foole Meze
Author: 
Recipe type: Appetiser
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 -6
 
Foole Meze is a Greek fava bean appetizer or starter course. In point of fact my name for the dish translates as "fava bean appetizer."
Ingredients
  • 3 cups frozen fava (broad) beans
  • ½ cup kalamata olives
  • 4-6 marinated artichoke hearts, quartered
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 4 teaspoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. Cook the fava beans in rapidly boiling water for 4 minutes, then rinse under cold water.
  2. Remove the leathery outer skin from the fava beans and discard.
  3. Mix together the shelled fava beans, olives, and artichoke hearts in a bowl.
  4. Mix together the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and sea salt in a small bowl.
  5. Place equal amounts of the fava bean mixture on serving plates, drizzle with the dressing, and top with the parsley and a little freshly ground black pepper.

I hope you enjoy!